You can fall in and land in icy lake water!
You may have been wary of regular volcanoes, but you might need to brush up on your knowledge of ice volcanoes.
Halton Police are warning residents to stay away and off of ice shelves forming along the shore of Lake Ontario. Ice shelves are formed over the top of the water and often feature a hole in the mound of ice.
"Nifty to look at, but not safe to explore. While the water is shallow underneath, if you pop through, you may not get out," reads a tweet from Halton Police on January 25.
Ice shelves are forming at various locations along Lake Ontario's shoreline. Nifty to look at, but not safe to explore. While the water is shallow underneath, if you pop through, you may not get out.
Remember: No ice is 100% safe.
[Illustration: Tom Gill, with consent] pic.twitter.com/utZEZ722H5
— Halton Police (@HaltonPolice) January 25, 2022
According to an infographic reposted by the Halton police, if you were to fall in through the hole and into the shallow ice water beneath, you would have "little chance of climbing out."
The Weather Network is also warning residents of the dangers they pose and educating people on how they are formed.
Melinda Singh, a TWN meteorologist, says they're created by "strong winds" that sweep the lake water towards the shore, and over time, the frozen mounds develop as the water "freezes upon impact."
"Ice shelves protect the shorelines from erosion, but are also very dangerous since they are not solid structures," said Singh.
"Many ice shelves are hollow underneath and tend to form on the lake itself. It is very unsafe to walk on because you could step on a thin patch and fall right into the water," Singh added.
That thin patch is often called an ice volcano, according to another TWN meteorologist Matt Grinter.
Grinter says as ice volcanoes grow with each wave, a thin layer of ice forms at the edge of the ice shelf, and if someone were to step on it, they could be "plunging down into a six-to-10-foot-deep hole into the frigid waters."
So, if you see an interesting-looking mountain of ice along a lakeshore, your best bet is to take a picture from a safe distance away and enjoy the beauty of nature.